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e-connect 7 September

Date published: 2023-09-07

Cllr Kevin Guy, Leader of Bath & North East Somerset Council

e-connect 07 September 2023

A message from Cllr Kevin Guy, Leader of Bath & North East Somerset Council

As the new school term starts this week I want to reassure parents and young people that we have worked with the Department for Education and can confirm that there is no RAAC in our four council-maintained community schools. While academies and church schools are responsible for carrying out their checks, I want to offer reassurance that we would support any affected schools should they need assistance. The council’s maintenance team is not aware of any council buildings that have the same material, but we are reviewing this.
As well as schools our two universities are embarking on a new academic year.  I am proud of the contribution students make to our area and have written to them to extend a warm welcome to Bath and North East Somerset whether living here for the first time or returning for another year.
Students are important for our local economy not just during their time studying in Bath. We need to do more to encourage those graduates, who go on to start up businesses, to stay and grow their businesses here.
This week I had the pleasure of meeting the Rt Revd Michael Beasley Bishop of Bath and Wells thanks to the Mayor of Bath, Councillor Dine Romero, who hosted his visit (pictured). We had a valuable discussion on how Bath Abbey, the third sector and the council can work more closely on key social issues facing our communities.
Tomorrow marks the start of a week of Heritage Open Days which are a great way of discovering hidden places all for free. I’m encouraging everyone to go and find out about the hidden gems on our doorstep. It is also worth remembering our free residents’ Discovery Card gives free entry to the Roman Baths, Victoria Art Gallery, and Parade Gardens – as well as access to Bath Abbey and exclusive discounts at other visitor attractions.   
Have a good weekend


Removal of redundant Bath bridge begins

Work has started to remove a redundant gas pipeline bridge in Bath as part of wider plans to build more houses and improve walking and cycling.

Bath tourism partners work together to welcome visitors to Bath

We have joined with Bath BID, the World Heritage Centre, Bath Forum, and Visit West to ensure a warm welcome to all visitors to Bath this summer.

City centre security scheme – closure of Upper Borough Walls

Residents, businesses and Blue Badge holders are being advised about the planned closure of Upper Borough Walls as part of the next phase of security improvements in Bath city centre.


A mix of events added to Bathscape Walking Festival

Pilgrimage, a singing walkabout, Nordic walking and a tiny forest all feature on the programme for this year’s Bathscape Walking Festival and Somer Valley Walking Festival.


Council renews agreement with community-owned renewable energy business

We have renewed our Cooperation Agreement with Bath & West Community Energy (BWCE) for a further five years, through to 2028.


Housing support plans for refugees

Plans to provide 22 homes for Afghan and Ukraine refugees and safeguard the properties for future affordable housing use are being considered by Bath & North East Somerset Council.


Emission-based parking charges introduced to improve air quality in Bath

Aims to continue improving air quality in Bath are being supported with the start of vehicle emission-based parking charges in council-owned car parks in Bath from September 8.


Council meetings

Do you want to know about decisions being taken by the council and have your say? Please follow this link to the council’s calendar of meetings.

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Support for new residents from Hong Kong

New residents from Hong Kong who have arrived in B&NES under the Hong Kong British Nationals (Overseas) visa scheme are invited to meet our resettlement team and find out about the local support available at an event on Tuesday 19th September from 3.30pm to 5.00pm at the Guildhall in Bath.

You can hear about funded English classes available at Bath College, hardship funding and the range of council services on offer.

Sign up here:

Cost of living crisis

Worried about the cost of living? Help is out there. There is a dedicated Cost of Living Crisis section on Live Well B&NES, including: You can also get help from your supplier through the Priority Services Register. This is a free support service that makes sure extra help is available to people in vulnerable situations. Check the website to see if you’re eligible to register.
For people struggling to afford broadband or phone services, there are social tariffs available. Connecting Devon and Somerset (CDS) has a webpage with more information about social tariffs including eligibility requirements and how to apply Social tariffs - Connecting Devon and Somerset

Library services

Our Libraries offer a range of services, including the Library at Home service where we can bring the library to you and sensory spaces for children and young adults with sensory needs.

Employment support and skills


The Good Employment Summit

Join West of England Combined Authority at the inaugural Good Employment Summit on 18 October at The Bristol Hotel, Prince Street from 10am-4pm to celebrate the Good Employment Charter.  


Achieve in B&NES provides a job and course search service for anybody wishing to enter the workplace or progress their career. There are free and funded courses from local providers.

We Work For Everyone

Looking for work and have a learning difficulty or learning disability, or you are autistic, we can help. Visit

Future Bright

Future Bright offers FREE career coaching, training and support. Visit the Future Bright website to find out more or call 01225 395555.

Employment & Skills Pod

The Employment & Skills Pod provides information, advice and guidance for residents who are unemployed, 18+ and would like support around employment.

You can find out more on the achieve website.

We’re running a series of events across B&NES during September and October with a range of local organisations attending.

Thursday 21 September - Pod Launch – Bath Central Library, The Podium BA1 5AN 
Monday 2 October - Keynsham Training & Jobs Fair – Keynsham Library, Civic Centre BS31 1FS
Tuesday 24 October - Midsomer Norton Training & Jobs Fair – Midsomer Norton Library, High St BA3 2DP

Health, wellbeing and support


Live Well B&NES

Live Well B&NES is a web-based resource providing information, signposting and support to Bath & North East Somerset residents.

Community Wellbeing Hub

The Community Wellbeing Hub opening hours are from Monday to Friday, 9am until 5pm. Call the Hub on 0300 247 0050 or text 07870 868368 or visit the website.

Bath Mind

Bath Mind is here for everyone living in B&NES. For more information, support resources and to self-refer, visit the website, or call our Access Community Mental Health Team: Freephone 0808 175 1369 or you can email.

Age UK

Age UK Bath & North East Somerset run specialised Dementia Groups in the district. These groups are a safe, fun environment for people to come for activities and friendship. Find out more here or call 01225 466135.

Sight loss support

Sight Support West of England provides emotional and practical support to help people adjust to living with sight loss. To find out more, or make an appointment please call  0117 3224885 or email. For more information on the full range of services, visit the website. For more useful information visit the RNIB website.

Domestic abuse

Southside provides help to people who live in Bath & North East Somerset who are at risk of domestic violence and abuse. The working hours are 9am-5pm Monday-Thursday, and 9am-4pm Fridays. Local support services can be found here.

Do you look after someone else?

If you support someone who has a disability, illness, mental health condition, addiction or who needs extra help as they grow older, Bath and North East Somerset Carers’ Centre is here for you. Contact our freephone support line: 0800 038 8885 or email us. We’re available 9am-1pm, every weekday.

Public health newsletter

To keep up to date with the latest public health news stories across Bath and North East Somerset, including upcoming events and other information, subscribe to the public health monthly newsletter. You can also browse previous editions of the public health newsletter.
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Date published: 2023-09-07

Cllr Kevin Guy, Leader of Bath & North East Somerset Council

Date published: 2023-09-07